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This year's World's Best Awards survey was open for voting January 11 through May 10, 2021, as destinations around the world were lifting COVID-19 restrictions. Survey rules have always allowed readers to reflect on their travel experiences over a three-year period. We hope that this year's honorees will inspire your own travels as you get back out into the world.

During a year when so many American travelers favored road trips, it's easy to see the appeal of the mid-Atlantic region, which offers a breadth of experiences within easy driving distance for much of the Eastern Seaboard. Whether they wanted to explore the beaches of New Jersey or a family-friendly amusement park in Pennsylvania, T+L readers gravitated toward spacious resorts that put outdoor pursuits at their fingertips. 

The Reeds at Shelter Haven, Stone Harbor, New Jersey
The Reeds at Shelter Haven, hotel, exterior, Stone Harbor, New Jersey
| Credit: Courtesy of The Reeds at Shelter Haven

Every year for our World's Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Hotels were rated on their facilities, location, service, food, and overall value. Properties were classified as city or resort based on their locations and amenities.

One World's Best Awards voter appreciated how the check-in team at the No. 9 Hotel Hershey in Pennsylvania greeted her with the phrase, "Have a sweet stay." And while that property wins praise for hitting some delicious buttons — down to the chocolate-themed spa packages — those same words of welcome could apply to any of the hotels and resorts in the mid-Atlantic states that our readers voted to this list.

"What else could you want?" one reader asked of No. 2 Congress Hall, a bright, summery property on New Jersey's Cape May. "The ocean, a beautiful beach with cabanas including food and drink service, a stately historic hotel with beautiful rooms and excellent service, plus the charm of Victorian homes and businesses next door." Other waterside winners include the No. 5 Bungalow Hotel, a youthful property a stone's throw from the boardwalk in Long Branch, New Jersey, and the sleek Asbury (No. 7) in Asbury Park.

Inland regions got plenty of love from T+L readers as well. Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in southwest Pennsylvania snapped up the No. 4 spot, earning plaudits for its spectacular amenities, including multiple restaurants, experiences like bowling and paintball, a golf course — even wildlife habitats. Of No. 6, Omni Bedford Springs Resort, one reader wrote, "Outstanding historical inn and lovely setting!"

But the pull of the tides was just too strong: voters chose the Reeds at Shelter Haven as the No. 1 for this inaugural list. Read on to find out what readers had to say — and which other properties were among the best hotels in the mid-Atlantic.

1. The Reeds at Shelter Haven, Stone Harbor, New Jersey

The Reeds at Shelter Haven, Stone Harbor, New Jersey
The Reeds at Shelter Haven, hotel, Reeds room, interior, Stone Harbor, New Jersey
| Credit: Courtesy of The Reeds at Shelter Haven

Located on a strip of land that hugs the Jersey coast, in the charming beachside community of Stone Harbor, the eight-year-old Reeds at Shelter Haven garners raves from readers for, well, just about everything. "Simply excellent," says one; "amazing location, beautiful hotel, great family," writes another. With its Turkish hammam offerings, the sybaritic two-story Salt Spa is particularly unmissable.

Score: 88.43
More information: reedsatshelterhaven.com

2. Congress Hall, Cape May, New Jersey

Congress Hall, Cape May, New Jersey
Congress Hall, hotel, exterior, Cape May, New Jersey
| Credit: Courtesy of Cape Resorts

Score: 88.27
More information: caperesorts.com

3. Inn at Perry Cabin, St. Michaels, Maryland

The Inn at Perry Cabin, St. Michaels, Maryland
The Inn at Perry Cabin, aerial, hotel,St. Michaels, Maryland
| Credit: Jay Fleming Photography /Courtesy of Inn at Perry Cabin

Score: 87.84
More information: innatperrycabin.com

4. Nemacolin, Farmington, Pennsylvania

Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, Farmington, Pennsylvania
Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, exterior Farmington, Pennsylvania
| Credit: Courtesy of Nemacolin Woodlands Resort

Score: 86.93
More information: nemacolin.com

5. Bungalow, Long Branch, New Jersey

Bungalow, Long Branch, New Jersey
Bungalow,sitting area, hotel, Long Branch, New Jersey
| Credit: Courtesy of Bungalow

Score: 86.78
More information: bungalowhotel.net

6. Omni Bedford Springs Resort, Bedford, Pennsylvania

Omni Bedford Springs Resort, Bedford, Pennsylvania
Omni Bedford Springs Resort, exterior, driveway, Bedford, Pennsylvania
| Credit: Courtesy of Omni Bedford Springs Resort

Score: 85.71
More information: omnihotels.com

7. The Asbury, Asbury Park, New Jersey

The Asbury, Asbury Park, New Jersey
The Asbury, hotel, sitting area, Asbury Park, New Jersey
| Credit: Nikolas Koenig/Courtesy of The Asbury

Score: 85.56
More information: theasburyhotel.com

8. Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa & Marina, Cambridge, Maryland

Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa & Marina, Cambridge, Maryland
Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa & Marina, golf course, Cambridge, Maryland
| Credit: Courtesy of Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa & Marina

Score: 85.05
More information: hyatt.com

9. The Hotel Hershey, Hershey, Pennsylvania

Hotel Hershey, Hershey, Pennsylvania
Hotel Hershey, lobby, Hershey, Pennsylvania
| Credit: Courtesy of Hershey Entertainment & Resorts

Score: 84.20
More information: thehotelhershey.com

10. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, New Jersey

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, New Jersey
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, lobby, Atlantic City, New Jersey
| Credit: Courtesy of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City

Score: 83.06
More information: hardrockhotelatlanticcity.com

See all of our readers' favorite hotels, cities, airlines, cruise lines, and more in the World's Best Awards for 2021.